What happened

Shares of Agilent Technologies (A -0.92%) were sinking 7.9% lower as of 11:34 a.m. ET on Wednesday. The decline came after the life sciences company announced its fiscal 2023 second-quarter results following the market close on Tuesday.

Agilent reported fiscal Q2 revenue of $1.72 billion, up 6.8% year over year. It posted net income of $302 million, or $1.02 per share, based on generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP). The company's non-GAAP earnings were $377 million, or $1.27 per share.

Although Agilent narrowly topped the consensus Wall Street earnings estimate for the latest quarter, the company's guidance fell short.

Agilent projects fiscal Q3 revenue of between $1.64 billion and $1.675 billion. Analysts' average third-quarter revenue estimate is $1.77 billion. The company expects fiscal Q3 non-GAAP earnings per share of $1.36 to $1.38, lower than the consensus estimate of $1.43.

The company's full-year outlook also disappointed investors. Agilent forecasts full-year revenue of between $6.93 billion and $7.03 billion. Analysts' average revenue estimate is $7.57 billion. Agilent expects full-year non-GAAP earnings per share of $5.60 to $5.65. The consensus estimate is $6.29.

So what

Agilent attributed its lower-than-expected guidance to "increased market uncertainties." CEO Mike McMullen also pointed to the "increasingly challenging market environment."

The main problems for the company are largely beyond its control. McMullen noted in Agilent's quarterly conference call that "continued macroeconomic uncertainty coupled with stresses in the banking system have accelerated a more conservative approach from our customers." 

Now what

Agilent remains in solid financial shape to weather its current headwinds. The company should be able to deliver stronger growth once the economy gets on a firmer footing.